Electric aviation is taking off to new heights and has the potential to be a game-changer for future transportation. However, the shift to electric aviation relies on batteries, which have a critical role to play in storing and supplying the energy needed for flight.
That’s why Astrolabe is leveraging its battery analytics expertise to help replace less efficient conventional fossil fuel-dependent engines with cleaner, more sustainable energy sources.
As technology progresses, lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries are beginning to achieve the cost and performance required to power short-haul and hybrid electric flight.
Their main benefits for the electric aviation industry are as follows:
For all these advantages, many companies are beginning to investigate the potential of electric aviation, including Airbus, Boeing, and Rolls Royce… And Astrolabe is prepared to meet the growing needs of this new industry.
Li-ion batteries have huge advantages for electric aviation but they also pose some challenges for the future.
For example, while Li-ion battery energy density surpasses many other types of batteries, they still lag behind conventional aviation fuels – and this presents a challenge for longer flights.
For longer flights, current battery technology falls short in matching the energy-to-weight ratio of jet fuel, which limits the practical range of electric planes. Furthermore, the aviation industry would need a wide network of charging stations that can rapidly recharge aircraft batteries.
Astrolabe leverages its battery expertise to drive a more efficient use of energy and sustainable ways of transportation.
Astrolabe is developing subject matter expertise around applying lithium-ion batteries for electric aviation and can help the USAF deploy and sustain more reliable battery systems.
Although there is still much more research and development needed to commercialize battery systems for this environment, Astrolabe is striving to accelerate this process so that electric aircraft can play a much more relevant role in the coming years.
The partnership between Astrolabe and the USAF is now more solid than ever. So far, Astrolabe has developed preliminary analytics and standard operating procedures that can support the USAF’s battery-related needs. As more companies enter this market, Astrolabe is poised to grow its leadership role in electric aviation.
Today, with a new Phase 1 contract to conduct customer development, Astrolabe will focus on building its capabilities and securing a Phase 2 contract with the USAF that will allow it to implement its algorithms on actual hardware and in real time operating systems.
With every contract we win also comes a new responsibility to take electric batteries to the next level. Astrolabe will continue to look for innovative partners and solutions to the most pressing needs of the market and create a more efficient future.